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We recently blogged about Konica Minolta’s takeover of Pitney Bowes and all the disadvantages that come with it, such as loss freedom of choice in equipment or contract, loss of long-standing relationships between you and key players at your dealer. Anyone who was a client of Pitney Bowes Document Imaging business is now going to face dealing with a manufacturer that is unfamiliar with their business and account. In that situation, it’s the clients who lose. Want a better situation? Do business with a small dealer.
To illustrate how much better it is to work with a small dealer, we’re going to use a common example – a service call for your office equipment.
The reality of business machines is that they are used constantly and with constant use comes wear and tear. There are, unfortunately, going to be times when your multi-function device breaks down. If you’re dealing with a large national or multinational dealer, you’re going to call a toll free number to reach their service department. At this point, you’ll be confronted with a recorded message asking you to select the menu option that relates to your call. You select the service option and likely be transferred to another menu that asks you whether you’d like to request a service call, check the status of a service ticket or some other unnecessary option. Then you’ll probably be asked to input the serial number or model number of your machine so that a customer service rep “can better assist you.” You’ve been on the phone for five minutes or more and you haven’t even been able to speak to someone, let alone submit your actual service request. When you eventually speak to someone, they’ll see your company file in front of them and maybe some notes from previous calls with other reps. You very likely won’t be speaking with the same person more than once and it definitely won’t be the person who sold you the machine in the first place – they work in “sales” and this is a service-related issue.
When you work with a small dealer, you call one number for everything: the same number you called when you first reached out for your new equipment. Maybe you’ll have more than one number, the second being your sales rep’s personal line (whom you’ve met with face-to-face more than once); either way, you’ll immediately reach a human being, someone you’ve spoken to countless times and knows your name. They also know your business and equipment and know that you need to get up and running again as soon as possible. The people at your small local dealer.
Your time is valuable and, with your machine not working, you’re spending it dealing with an issue that’s interrupting your operations and keeping you from the work that will help grow your business.
The service rep you spoke to at the national company is going to take your information, fill out a form and submit a service request for you. That request will then be processed (possibly by another person) and a technician will be scheduled to come to your location. Depending on the service rep’s workload, your ticket might not be processed until later that day, meaning you’re going to be down and nothing is being done about it. The technician that’s coming won’t necessarily be from the company you bought your equipment from either, but more likely a contracted service provider, meaning your service call is being scheduled by someone at another office, adding an additional step in the process. There is a good chance the technician has never been to your business before and they’ll need to familiarize themselves with your set up before they can even begin to diagnose the issue.
With the small dealer, the person you speak to is going to be the same person scheduling the technician. There aren’t going to be forms to fill out and requisitions to submit to other service providers or multiple people required to do a simple task, just a notification sent to the first available technician. The technician is coming directly from the dealer and is often going to be one of the people that set up the equipment in the first place, meaning he or she has an understanding of your operation and how your device factors into it. You will be back up and running before you know it.
Small dealers like BrockOA provide a level of service to each of its clients that large national companies can’t provide. They have a personal understanding of your business’ needs as well as the value of your time and are essentially what a company like Pitney Bowes was, on a local scale. You’ll only need one point of contact for all of your equipment needs, questions, and issues and all aspects of satisfying your requirements – sales, finance, service and maintenance – are provided in-house.
When choosing where to purchase or lease your equipment from, think small! Contact BrockOA to see the difference we can make for you.